The Strategist

Europe's top polluters set to fight climate protection

07/16/2021 - 03:43

European companies, which play a large role in pollution, blamed the EU of staging risks to innovation and investment after the union revealed an ambitious climate protection plan, the FT said.

Janak Bhatta
Janak Bhatta
Manufacturers of vehicle, heavy and aviation industry opposed the proposals, which also list a ban on selling newly made cars with diesel and petrol engines since 2035, taxes on marine and aviation fuels and scrapping the free greenhouse gas emission allowance scheme. Within hours of the plan's publication, many companies were already gearing up to struggle against the programme, lobbying national governments to reject it.

European carmakers are particularly worried about Brussels' plans. Representatives of the sector in Spain, which ranks second in this area in the EU after Germany, said their industry faced unfair treatment and called on the country's authorities to "weigh up their position". In Germany, the industry body VDA said it considered the measures to be "anti-innovative" and their implementation impossible. However, Volkswagen, the largest manufacturer, supported the initiative of Brussels - this company is already investing $35 billion dollars in electric cars.

In aviation, Lufthansa spoke out, arguing that the industry would be losing out to global rivals because of the new plan. The International Air Transport Association spoke out more sharply, saying that with the introduction of new taxes on fuel use, Brussels is scoring an own goal.

Cement, steel, fertilizer and aluminum producers also complained about the plans. All of these industries, together with the electricity generation sector, account for 45 per cent of emissions under Europe's emissions trading system.